10Nightly Business Report
to raise taxes by $1.6 trillion, while cutting spending by $400 billion. on top of that, mr. obama asked for $50 billion more for infrastructure spending and $140 billion to extend unemployment insurance benefits and the payroll tax cut. republicans literally laughed it off. >> they want... they want to have this extra spending that's actually greater than the amount they're willing to cut. i mean, it's... it's... was not a serious proposal. and so, right now, we're almost nowhere. >> reporter: across the capitol, republican senate leader mitch mcconnell told the "wall street journal" his party would be willing to bring in more tax revenues if the president agreed to tighten up the eligibility requirements for entitlements. mcconnell said that could mean higher medicare premiums for the wealthy, an increase in the medicare eligibility age and slower cost-of-living increases for social security. but he ruled out higher tax rates. most democrats have ruled out all of those cuts, arguing they would undermine the nation's most successful programs. the president asked for, but it appear
secretary timothy geithner said he's willing to go over it if republicans don't agree to tax hikes for the wealthiest americans. president obama said basically the same thing but added one more hard line to the negotiations. >> if congress in any way suggests that they're going to tie negotiations to a debt ceiling vote and take us to the brink of default once again, as part of a budget negotiation-- which, by the way, we have never done in our history until we did it last year-- i will not play that game. >> late today the president spoke by telephone with house speaker john boehner. no specifics on what they said to each other, but it was their first conversation in a week. eventually the two sides will get down to bargaining over specifics, including entitlements. one idea may be to change the way the government measures inflation. that may sound like a small change, but, as darren gersh reports, it could have a big impact. >> reporter: if the price of oranges goes up, consumers will buy apples and other cheaper foods. we know that. economists call that switching "substitution," but
today. the house speaker characterized the negotiations to avoid huge tax increases and spending cuts at a stalemate. the race to solve the fiscal cliff triggered another round of dramatic sound bites from republicans and president obama. darren gersh has the latest. >> reporter: the president is still pushing to wrap up a deal on the fiscal cliff before christmas and just in case anyone missed that point, he visited a toy factory to urge congress to avoid raising taxes on the middle class. >> that's sort of like the lump of coal you get for christmas. that's a scrooge christmas. a typical middle-class family of four would see their income taxes go up by about $2,200. >> reporter: t psidents oposg to raise taxesy $1.6 trillion, while cutting spending by $400 billion. on top of that, mr. obama asked for $50 billion more for infrastructure spending and $140 billion to extend unemployment insurance benefits and the payroll tax cut. republicans literally laughed it off. >> they want... they want to have this extra spending that's actually greater than the amount they're willing to cut. i
: with no compromise in sight for a deficit deal, president obama pressed his case at the home of a middle class family in virginia today, part of his pitch to extend tax cuts for all but the very wealthy. good evening, i'm jeffrey brown. >> woodruff: and i'm judy woodruff. on the "newshour"
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